In this episode of 'Arts Express' Mike Murphy reports from Strokestown House in county Roscommon looking at how curator Luke Dodd has restored the house to its former glory.
In this clip from the programme Luke talks about the history of the house, its current and previous owners and his plans for the future. The house was sold by its original owners the Pakenham Mahon family in 1979 to Westward Garage owned by Jim Callery who is Luke's cousin.
I convinced Jim that he should employ me to look after the place
Luke runs the house and manages the 300 acre farm, which provides the necessary funds to maintain the house.
It's a country gentleman farmer house from the beginning of the 18th century and it still attains very much that character
Luke says that visitors can experience the house as it should be without ropes or barriers describing it as a house that people lived in and enjoyed.
Owner Jim Callery speaks about the importance of preserving houses like this.
Strokestown House was used as the setting of the film 'Anne Devlin' (1984), based on the 1798 Rising. With the money received from the film, the house underwent extensive refurbishment and subsequently opened to the public in 1987.
This episode of 'Arts Express' was broadcast on 2 April 1991.